Keas are primarily ground-dwelling birds that are extremely lively and intelligent. They develop a very pronounced instinct for play and inspect everything new with curiosity or destructively. Keas used to be hunted by farmers because they would sit on sheep and peck at the flesh on their backs while they were still alive. The injured sheep often died from their infected wounds. Since 1986 keas have been protected as an endangered species.


ClassificationOrder: parrots; family: New Zealand parrots
HabitatMountain ranges above the treeline on New Zealand’s South Island, non-migratory
Reproduction2–4 eggs that are incubated for 2 to 4 weeks
DietRoots, tubers, fruits, insects, occasionally animal flesh; Keas benefit from human waste dumps

Status according to Red List

More information you will get on the web page of the IUCN Red List.